Pumpkin Glazed Turkey Legs #30DaysOfPumpkin

I have several recipes ready  for the weeks to come. However tonight's dinner was just so great I could not contain my excitement.
I present to you.....

The Pumpkin Glazed Drumstick.

 A couple weeks ago my husband took some time off from work and we brought the three kids to the local fair. We thought by doing this, that we would earn some extra cool parent points. That the kids would have fun, we would tire them out and when we returned home they would be happy, friendly kids who wanted to sleep.


This particular fair is usually only 20 minutes from our house. However this day, the drive took us 1.5 HOURS. The traffic was so horrendous.  Then we arrived to complete chaos. The fair was so crowded we were scared one of the kids would get separated from us. So we were a both a bundle of nerves the whole time. We saw a few animals, which was always fun. Then we went to hunt for something to eat. After a couple hours of grumpy unhappy kids... all I wanted was one of those epic smoked turkey legs. 

We looked high and low and I couldn't find them anywhere!  Not only did the kids leave the fair bummed out because there were no games and hardly any animals... I was totally pissed off that they didn't have turkey legs! 

I wanted to somehow tie my craving for turkey legs into #30DaysOfPumpkin. What better way then to make a sticky, sweet and savory glaze and oven roast them?

My husband thought I was crazy when I told him what was simmering on the stove, but after one bite he thought I was pure awesomeness. 

 Pumpkin Glazed Turkey Legs


4 large turkey legs
1 cup pumpkin puree ( I used fresh, however you can also use canned)
1 cup hard cider (you can also used non-alcoholic)
2 tbs apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup maple syrup
 2 tbs stone ground mustard
3 tbs brown sugar
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp salt
Pinch of black pepper
1 cinnamon stick
1 sprig of rosemary
Sea salt and fresh Rosemary sprigs for serving


Preheat oven to 325.

Meanwhile prepare glaze. Add all of the glaze ingredients into a medium sauce pan. Simmer over medium heat for about 20 minutes or until it has thickened into a sauce (think BBQ). 

Pat turkey legs dry and place on a baking sheet. 

Using a pastry brush, brush each turkey leg with the glaze.

Bake for about 15 minutes. Apply a second coat of glaze and then return to the oven. 

Turn heat up to 400 degrees and roast for an additional 25 minutes. Stopping half way to apply a third coat of the pumpkin glaze. I went for a fourth coat 5-10 minutes before they were due to be done, this is optional.

To serve, sprinkle with sea salt and fresh rosemary.




  1. Carrie!! Oh my word, girl! These look amazing!!

  2. My husband just walked by and got slightly excited when he saw this recipe - your photos are beautiful and this recipe seems perfect for Fall football season...or (dare I say) a World Series party? Go Sox!

    1. Don't jinx it! But yeah..... World Series party with these Turkey Legs would be a fine idea!

  3. Uau, que aspeto delicioso.
    Bom fim de semana
    Kiss, Susana
    Nota: Ver o passatempo a decorrer no meu blog:

  4. I think this just may be my new favorite pumpkin recipe!! Oh goodness, just looking at these legs is making my mouth water

  5. These are seriously making my mouth water right now

  6. Maybe I did something wrong by I made these last night as written but used chicken drumsticks instead and they turned out flacid and bland. Even after a turn under the broiler I didn't get that golden brown crust in the pictures above. I did like the flavor of the sauce but would remove any skin from the meat first so that the flavor would get into the meat next time.

    1. First, off I'm glad you at least liked the flavor of the glaze. Curious how long did you roast them for? Chicken legs are a lot smaller than turkey and won't take as long to cook through. The glaze may not caramelize if it's not cooked long enough. Now this is a sticky glaze, if you want something that is crispy you might want to try a different recipe. These legs are the type that when you pick up to bite into them... you need to lick your fingers clean afterwards, it's a tad messy. As for the flavor, if you don't like the taste of the chicken meat perhaps try brining it over night would work best for you.

  7. I'm going to use turkey breasts ... any advice on cook time for those? Planning on making tonight!

  8. I've been watching your 30 days of pumpkin on social media but finally came over to comment on these turkey legs! This is pure genius, Carrie. We usually do turkey legs for Thanksgiving because we don't eat a whole bird. Wonder if I can talk my parents and brother into trying these?

  9. Do you think I could freeze the glaze with the turkey legs and then cook them later?

    1. That is a really good question. I have not tried it... however I don't see why not.

  10. Hi Carrie! You think this would work well for an entire turkey?

  11. This was the most beautiful looking, i'm wondering if there's a way to adjust the recipe and cook a whole turkey this way for Thanksgiving...

  12. My sister and I attempted this recipe tonight and honestly it was a disaster. The glaze is lovely and I can't wait to try it again with chicken thighs or boneless breasts. It's great. But the cook time on the turkey legs was totally off. We ended up having to cook them for another 30+ minutes. And maybe it's my novice at not cooking turkey legs before, but they are full of tendons and rendered the dinner nearly completely inedible. It was a total waste of money on the turkey legs.

    1. Also- the glaze never caramelized like in the photos. Still delicious but not at all what we anticipated.

  13. I am so glad I read the comments prior to making the glaze. After the glaze obtained boiling state, I left it on medium high heat for 20 minutes to get the glaze to thicken up to that BBQ sauce-like consistency. It worked beautifully. I followed the rest of the directions as written and the drumsticks turned out delicious! Looked just like the photo.

  14. Oh wow this looks amazing. I am planning on making it this fall. Thanks for sharing, I love love love pumpkin recipes <3